When the End Isn’t Really the End

Serious injuries, such as broken bones, head trauma, or disc herniations requiring back surgery, are not uncommon experiences following an auto accident or slip and fall.  Serious injuries like these can require surgery, sometimes multiple surgeries, and extensive rounds of physical therapy and rehabilitation.  Even after all of the treatment, cortisone injections and rehab, an injury may not be fully resolved.  Pain and symptoms will often remain and can remain for months, years, or a lifetime.  Such permanent injuries require an aggressive injury attorney and a plan to fight for every dollar.

A common question I hear in these types of cases is: What if I never get better?  Do I have to wait for years of treatment to finish before we can try and resolve the claim?  In many cases, such as when hardware has been installed to repair a fracture, or when surgery was required to fuse vertebrae in the spine, the injury is clearly permanent and the pain life long.  In these instances, we will request a letter of opinion from the treating physician or expert.  Their letter will identify the length and nature of an injury, the potential need for future surgery or treatment and the cost of such treatment.  These letters of opinion can be used as part of a demand package to the insurance company or as part of the evidence at trial.  With this information in hand, you can attempt to settle and resolve your claim even though you are not technically at an “end point” with your injury.

Retaining an expert comes with a cost and requires additional effort and work from your attorney but it adds considerable value to your case.  Discuss potential experts with your attorney and make sure there is a plan for long term success.  Shortcuts have no place in serious injury cases.  If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in an auto accident or slip and fall, contact our office right away for a free consultation.